KIMBERLY JAHNS, OPINION EDITOR
Why can we never say what we really want to? It’s a pretty obvious question with a pretty obvious answer, but sometimes, life would be so much easier if we could freely speak our minds and say what we truly wanted to say.
I would probably curse a number of people out, scream, cry and throw something at the wall, and that would only be 10 minutes into my tell-no-lies life. I would probably have no friends at the end of this truth session, either. We go around saying false-truths to protect the ones we care for and love – these statements I can understand. I’m not going to walk around telling people they should’ve studied harder on their test or their best wasn’t good enough. Nor would I want people walking around telling me I could stand to lose a few pounds or that I really need to update my wardrobe. Some opinions should stay in our minds.
But overall, why do we keep our mouths shut so often? Simple problems could be solved if they were simply discussed; these small slivers of annoyance that are never aired out turn into huge logs of anger that destroy friendships and relationships. If you hate the fact that your roommate doesn’t do their laundry, be like, “Hey – would you mind doing your laundry?’” At first they may be offended, but they should, hopefully, get over it and actually do their laundry.
We like to be caring individuals that put up with crap until we can’t handle the crap anymore and then blame the other person for somehow being oblivious to the fact that they couldn’t tell something was bothering us. Yet we pretended the entire time that it was OK. If something is not OK, say it is not OK!
Besides grievances, people also aren’t as open about the good feelings they may have. I have best friends to whom I rarely ever disclose how much they mean to me. I show in actions that they are important in my life, but sometimes verbally telling someone how much they mean to you is definite. Actions can be misconstrued, words are direct and their meaning can be much clearer.
Recently, a friend of mine told me she enjoys having me in her life. Wow. What a compliment I feel unworthy of, yet she told me it. Why can’t I be that brave to tell others they are key components in my life? We wear a shell protecting us from getting too close to others, maybe due to commitment issues, lack of trust or not wanting to invest effort in a relationship that may not give as much as you put into it; we keep people in the dark of our true feelings.
When other people hear the compliments or grievances, even if they don’t agree, they at least know where you’re coming from. Otherwise people are left to assume, and these assumptions can lead to misunderstandings and broken relationships. It may be difficult to be honest and open but, in the long run, honesty will be worth it.